From the Head of the Junior School

From the Head of the Junior School

Dear Parents and Friends of the Junior School,

It is pleasing to have little to report to you this week other than a smooth, settled and full week at school for all boys and staff…not something that we now take for granted. We hope for five more weeks just like this one! That is not to say that you should stop reading as there is still important information to note below.

Thank you for your continued cooperation and support for our adjusted routines. The adjusted start and finish times for the school day and the special timetable that supports cohort-ing will continue unchanged for Week 6 (next week). The cafeteria remains closed and therefore lunch orders are still unavailable. We continue to evaluate all aspects of the school day in light of changing recommendations and will communicate changes to routines clearly and with as much notice as possible. Guidelines for schools are not always aligned to community guidelines and every school’s context is different in many significant and subtle details, so please do not assume that a change to any aspect of community life or at another school will be applicable to our Junior School context. At present, the School is working through logistics involved in re-commencing individual instrumental lessons and a limited offering of swimming squads. Parents of boys enrolled in these activities will be updated by each activity’s staff as to whether and when these activities can resume. We are increasingly hopeful and preparing for the likelihood that in coming weeks we will be able to hold Kindergarten 2022 Orientation Visits, a New Boy 2022 Morning, Swimming Championships for Years 3-6 and Learn to Swim clinics for Kindergarten, Year 1 and 2. Parents of boys likely to be involved in these events will be informed as certainty and details become available.   

The Auxiliary Annual General Meeting was held yesterday. The Junior School has again enjoyed amazing support from many parents this year despite the challenges that have curtailed many community events. I thank the Auxiliary members and Year Parents who have served our community over the past twelve months, especially the Committee of Michelle Read, Amanda Maclean, Helen Karlos and Doreen Millena. Doreen has stepped aside for 2022 so the role of Treasurer will be taken on by Liz Chan. Otherwise, the Committee remains unchanged for 2022. This team will be assisted by a group of Year Parents organising experiences for each year group and there are vacancies on some years – please contact Michelle Read if you are happy to serve in this way. I look forward to working closely with the team and we hope for less disruption to Auxiliary events next year. I do commend to Year 1 and Year 4 parents the opportunity to secure fantastic artworks created by the boys through on-line auctions that will support Auxiliary fundraising. These artworks are truly one-of-a-kind and great mementos of the year group and the boys’ artistic expression at this age. Unfortunately, the interruption to schooling meant that other grades could not complete a piece as planned, making this opportunity for Year 1 and 4 parents even rarer!

Next Tuesday marks the departure of Miss Kathryn Cvetkovska who has been on staff this year in a part-time support role across many grades. We thank Miss Cvetkovska for her service to the Junior School and wish her well as she takes up a permanent position at Rainbow Street Public School.

As is our custom, we will mark Remembrance Day next Thursday with a 9am service, assisted by students from the Cadet Unit. This year, due to restrictions, the service will only be for boys and staff in Years 3-6.

Next Monday, I will address the boys in Year 5 about the responsibilities of leadership that await them in 2022 and the process by which they can prepare themselves and nominate for particular roles of service within the Junior School. Following this meeting, parents of Year 5 students will also be emailed details of the process to allow you to discuss with and guide your son as he contemplates roles for which he would like to be considered.   

Many boys again participated in Netfit last Saturday. In the absence of a regular Saturday Sport programme, IPSHA is offering this online programme on Saturday mornings to promote fitness, to prepare the students for the resumption of community and school sport, and to promote some healthy inter-school competition. Netfit continues with Session 3 tomorrow morning on Zoom at 10am. The session runs for 50 minutes, is free to join and you do not need to have participated previously to join in tomorrow. The Netfit flyer is available here. Simply join the Zoom meeting (ID – 828 2466 7008; Passcode – 766841). 

Whilst the status of events may yet change and details will be communicated closer to the time, I remind parents to be attentive to the dates of the following events:

  • Monday 22 November: Year 6 PYP Exhibition
  • Monday 6 December: Years 3-6 Prize Giving
  • Monday 6 December: Year 6 Parent & Son Dinner
  • Tuesday 7 December: K-2 Christmas Service
  • Tuesday 7 December: Year 6 Valedictory Service
  • Wednesday 8 December: Final day for all Junior School students
  • Thursday 9 December: Year 7 2022 Allwell Testing – Year 6 students only will need to attend school on this day to take part in Allwell Testing.

The format of these events will be confirmed closer to the time. It remains likely that parents will not be permitted and/or able to be hosted safely on-site for many of these events, so we will stream or record and distribute these events for the enjoyment of all in our community.

Mark Dunn | Head of the Junior School

“You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.”

John 13:13-15

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